Evergreen Packaging: a Predictable Supply Chain with Improved Maintenance Scheduling
“Predictability is fundamental to customer satisfaction”
Food and beverage companies rely on cartons and containers from Evergreen Packaging to keep perishable products as fresh as possible for as long as possible. Any interruptions in the manufacturing process could disrupt the supply chain in ways that could be disastrous for food and beverage producers.
Evergreen is driving predictable production through proactive scheduled maintenance.
Based in Memphis, Tennessee, Evergreen is one of the largest suppliers of total “gable-top” packaging solutions in the world. Evergreen operates paper mills in North Carolina and Arkansas and each mill employs about 1,200 workers. Of these, about 350 workers at each plant are responsible for ongoing maintenance of plant equipment and processes. Another 25-30 individual at each plant are responsible for planning and scheduling of plant maintenance activities.
Staying out in front in a competitive market requires not only excellent products but also a predictable supply chain for customers. Evergreen must deliver packaging that meets its customers’ specifications and it must deliver at the time and place that customers specify. If the packaging were not up to specification or if it were to arrive later than anticipated, the freshness of a customer’s food or beverage product might be compromised.
And fulfilling these needs are not simple. Different customers have different needs for thermal and barrier materials. Each client may have several brands that require packaging, and manufacturing containers for each brand might involve printing graphics on a carton, information about the product, and more.
For evergreen, operational efficiency depends on integration. Using multi resource scheduling gives the company immediate insight into the work queue from the plant maintenance system. They can also see the schedules of the individuals with the skills required for specific tasks, which appear through integration with the HR solutions. The system even provides planners with information about eh availability of the materials required to perform a scheduled maintenance task.
Evergreen employs about 55 planners between its 2 US paper mills. The planners work on-site at the mills. Maintenance planning may start as far as a year in advance of a scheduled outage, depending on the machinery that needs attention. Integration between the multi-resource scheduling and the plant maintenance systems ensure that the planners are aware of the work that needs to be done as well as the materials and skills that will be required to complete the work. Integration with the HR system ensures that the planners can see which individuals possess which skills as well as what their schedules look like. Planners and plant supervisors review the planned maintenance on a monthly, weekly, and daily basis. Planers then use the systems to print weekly schedules for the work crews at each mill. Crew members see exactly what they are supposed to do each day and where the requisite materials and instructions can be found.
Once a maintenance task is complete, the crew supervisor closes out the work order in the plant maintenance system, which automatically records in the timekeeping system the amount of time the crews have worked.
For Evergreen, ensuring the predictability of the supply chain is of utmost importance. Predictability is fundamental to customer satisfaction and a necessary condition for long-term business relationships. The multi resource scheduling solution they are using ensure predictability and the continuity of its supply chain. The application enables Evergreen to maintain its mill machinery for optimal performance, minimize scheduling downtime, and avoid unplanned outages.
More than 97% of the time, Evergreen ships it orders on time, in full, and with no errors.